After a lull period lasting nearly two months, the Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) is finally back in action with the Bucharest Minor 2019.
Thirty teams across six of the competitive regions in Dota 2 competed for one of the eight spots of the second Minor of the 2018-19 DPC, but only eight of them secured a slot. These eight teams will then battle it out at the PGL studios in Bucharest, Romania, where $150,000 of the $300,000 prize pool and a spot at the Chongqing Major are both on the line. All of the action will start with the Group Stages on Wednesday, January 9, with the Playoffs running from Friday, January 11, to Sunday, January 13.
The Bucharest Minor will serve as the first Valve-sponsored LAN on the current patch (7.20). This means we should expect new and wildly experimental things from the eight teams playing in the tournament.
The Bucharest Minor 2019 – Betting Tips and Predictions
During the three-day Playoffs portion of the Bucharest Minor 2019, we’ll be posting one betting tip and prediction for each day. Make sure that you come back to this page every day to check on the latest updates:
- January 13: Gambit vs. Keen Gaming (bet won)
- January 12: OG vs. NiP (bet lost)
- January 11: Gambit Esports vs. OG (bet won)
Betting Odds – Who Are the Favourites to Win the Bucharest Minor? (Preview)
Bookmakers predict OG, the winners of The International 2018, to dominate the event and lift the trophy, while NiP, EHOME and Keen Gaming are the main teams who can produce the surprise, all 3 of them having odds between 3.50 and 6.00.
As the reigning The International 2018 champions, OG are the de-facto favourites to win the tournament. However, losing Anathan “ana” Pham seems to have hurt OG’s playstyle more than expected, and though Igor “ILTW” Filatov is a capable stand-in, don’t expect the team to mesh together so cleanly as they did back in August in the space of a single bootcamp. While OG should remain the “team to beat” at the Bucharest Minor 2019, don’t expect their journey to the title to be a cakewalk.
Boasting two members of the famed The International 2016 winners, Wings Gaming, on their roster, and a legendary TI-winning coach in Zhang “xiao8” Ning, EHOME has some scary potential as a team. Of course, they’ve yet to have anything to show for their potential so far in the past two years, but so did Wings Gaming for a long time before they started turning a lot of heads with their performance in 2016.
We’re not saying that EHOME are the second coming of Wings Gaming, but don’t be surprised if that turns out to be true.
Are There Any Dark Horses to Watch Out For?
Three teams at the Bucharest Minor stand out as potential spoilers: Ninjas in Pyjamas, Keen Gaming, and Gambit Esports.
Captained by the legendary TI5 winner, Peter “ppd” Dager, only a fool would count out Ninjas in Pyjamas, especially on LAN. Despite their disappointing performances online, ppd will surely have something up his sleeve when it counts the most.
Keen Gaming too should not be underestimated, both because they have the opportunity to scrim with plenty of top teams in China, and because they have a roster capable of pulling off upsets, headlined by none other than TI7 runner-up, Hu “Kaka” Liangzhi.
Finally, Gambit Esports are looking like a legitimate sleeper team. Since adding Artsiom “fng” Barshack to their roster in late December, they have looked scary good. Their performance at the WePlay! Dota 2 Winter Madness online tournament, where they dropped only a single game throughout the Playoffs, including a decisive sweep of OG in the Grand Finals, should give a lot of teams pause. If they continue improving at their current rate, they could be the second-best team in CIS. They might even be able to give the five-time Major champions, Virtus.Pro, a good run for their money.
While all of the eight teams fought tooth-and-nail to make it to the Bucharest Minor 2019, only these five Dota 2 teams have a legitimate shot at winning the title. The rest don’t even come close, both in terms of logic and the odds. BOOM ID, Team Team, or Playmakers Esports, winning the tournament and advancing to the Chongqing Major would make a good Cinderella story, but don’t count on it.
So, bet wisely, and have fun. Don’t forget to check back once the Playoffs of the Bucharest Minor 2019 starts for the latest updates.
Last update: January 11, 2018.